[Beowulf] ever heard of ScaleMP?

Mark Hahn hahn at mcmaster.ca
Tue Dec 11 09:28:17 EST 2007


there's a company, ScaleMP, which seems to be selling some kind of 
kit which enables to fairly large shared-memory x86_64 systems.
their website is nearly useless (http://www.scalemp.com/), but a little
more info can be had from SGI, which apparently uses ScaleMP for their
f1200 product (rebadged Ciara?).

they claim to support up to 32 sockets, 512GB memory.  "Versatile SMP".

SGI seems to aim it purely at structural/cfd/crash sims - 
mainly using Abaqus and related tools.

as far as I can tell, the 32s configuration is 4x 8-socket boxes,
each with 7x 1 Gb links to their peers.  seems to claim that it runs 
unmodified rh/fc/suse systems.  marketing docs claim that the secret
sauce is bios firmware, and mention that "at least 10%" of the memory
is "reserved" for system cache.  I'm not sure how the bios is involved,
but it sounds like a pretty generic network-shared-memory system,
which would be OK for uncontended pages, but would thrash once procs
wait for ~80 us to reference a remote page...

I would be most grateful if anyone has experience or knowlege of what
ScaleMP actually does.

thanks, mark hahn.
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